Pizza Crust Recipe
I posted this previously, but a friend is wanting a good pizza crust recipe so I told her I would share mine (again)!
Pizza is another one of those things that I’ve grown up with. I can remember my dad making homemade pizza when I was a very young girl, and before homemade pizza was “cool”. At that age, my job was helping my mom make the sauce and getting to spread it on the pizza dough.
Pizza is still a very integral part of my family’s life and tradition. (No, I’m still not Italian). Our traditional Christmas dinner at my parents’ house is homemade pizza. Our pizza skills have grown considerably and so have our palates. I really like veggies on my pizza but don’t care for greasy meats. No pepperonis or sausages for me, please!
The older brother with the mad cooking skills actually makes homemade pizza weekly for his family. They love being able to whip up their favorite basic pizza and he loves being able to try new toppings for himself.
Pizza is so amazing for that reason. It lends itself to many awesome toppings.
Yesterday was the last day of school for my girls this year. I made homemade pizza. They all love it, so even though it’s not an unusual occurrence, it’s still a treat for them. The girls like it with cheese and cheese – light on the sauce, but heavy on the cheese.
I have been trying out new pizza dough recipes lately because I just wasn’t thrilled with the one I had been making for most of my life. It wasn’t as flavorful or as crisp as I like. I have tried several whole wheat crust recipes, thinking that would give me the flavor and crunch I wanted. They did not. So, I kept searching. I talked to my aforementioned brother about pizza dough, and he said the key is better flour. As I was looking at pizza dough recipes yesterday I came across one from Jamie Oliver, the Naked Chef. I liked most of it. Having recently read several different things about pizza making I realized some things that had eluded my previously. So, with recipe in hand and tips to try out, I was excited.
The results were phenomenal! This recipe and the tips resulted in a crust that was thin and crisp with fantastic flavor. It was the perfect foundation for building a delicious pizza. Which I did. The hubs and I both agreed that the pizza I made for us (remember the girls just like cheese) was the best I have ever made. I even took a piece down to my mother, who seemed skeptical at the sight of it. She agreed that it was very good. On the grown up pizza I used a very, very light amount of pizza sauce followed by Ricotta Cheese and Mozzarella. Then I added some thinly sliced chicken breast that I had marinated and cooked in my grill pan. I followed that with caramelized onions and finished with some grated Parmigiano Reggiano.
Make sure the oven temperature is high, 400-500 degrees.
Use a well seasoned pizza stone.
Dust stone with cornmeal.
Use parchment paper for ease of transferring from prep to pizza stone.
Here is the recipe that I used, with the changes that I made. I used my stand mixer with dough hook to make the dough.
I started rolling my dough on a well floured surface, then put down parchment on the floured surface and finished rolling on the parchment.
Top your pizza dough with sauce, cheese, and any wonderful things that you desire. Bake at a very hot oven for 6-10 minutes, until the edges of the crust are lightly browned and the cheese is melty.
- 3 ½ cups bread flour
- 1 ½ to 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 ¼ cups lukewarm water
Add the flour and salt to the bowl of the mixer, making a well in the middle. Heat the water to lukewarm in a large microwave proof measuring cup, add the yeast, sugar, and olive oil and leave for a few minutes. Gently mix the ingredients in the measuring cup with a fork, the pour gently into the middle of the flour. Mix at a slow speed until the liquid starts to incorporate into the flour. Increase the speed on the mixer gradually. Once all of the ingredients have become mixed, turn the speed up to medium and mix for 5-7 minutes. The dough will pull away from the sides and bottom of the bowl and become smooth and springy. Lightly oil the bottom of the bowl with olive oil and cover with plastic wrap. Let it sit in a warm area until doubled in size.
When the dough has doubled in size, dump it onto a floured surface and punch down the dough. This is a quick kneading to get the air bubbles out of the dough. Form the dough into a large ball. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into fourths (I was able to get 4 good sized pizzas using this recipe). Make balls of the cut dough, placing 3 back into the bowl. Cover with the plastic wrap.
On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough to desired thickness.